Results tagged “vegetables”

Cooking Club, Tues 12th & Weds 13th March 2013

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smsalad0001.jpgThe Cooking Club is a monthly series of classes that you can dip in and out of as you please. At each class we cook a seasonal vegetarian supper, the stars of which are Riverford's beautiful organic vegetables and fruits. This class is perfect for those who want to eat seasonally and are after a little recipe inspiration (as well as a fun night out).

SmPSB0001.jpgClasses are usually held on the second Tuesday and/or Wednesday of the month, 7pm-10pm. We cook together for a couple of hours - learning different culinary techniques each month - and then sit to enjoy a convivial dinner around the kitchen table with wine.

Come in March for inspiration for cooking seasonal stars such as purple sprouting broccolileeks, spinach, spring onions and bananas. The menu is usually set at the last minute so that the best seasonal produce available from Riverford at the time can be used.

smCCMarch20120006.jpg“I have thoroughly enjoyed these classes. I have learned many new skills and the classes have given me ideas on using seasonal vegetables. I have used many of the recipes again.”

“Thank you for another wonderfully inspiring and enjoyable evening.”


Date: Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th March 2013

Time: 7pm - 10pm

Location: London N5 (Arsenal tube 2 mins walk)

Price: £45 per person per class. Or £120 for 3 Cooking Club class places, which could be 3 for you, or you plus 2 friends, or as gifts, or any combination of those options.

To book: Email Anna
Please read the booking terms & conditions before booking your place. Thank you.

Cooking Club, Tues 12th & Weds 13th Feb 2013

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smcookingclubpastry0001.jpgThe Cooking Club is a monthly series of classes that you can dip in and out of as you please. At each class we cook a seasonal vegetarian supper, the stars of which are Riverford's beautiful organic vegetables and fruits. This class is perfect for those who want to eat seasonally and are after a little recipe inspiration (as well as a fun night out).

smleeksalagrecque0007.JPGClasses are usually held on the second Tuesday and/or Wednesday of the month, 7pm-10pm. We cook together for a couple of hours - learning different culinary techniques each month - and then sit to enjoy a convivial dinner around the kitchen table with wine.

Come in February for inspiration for cooking seasonal stars such as potatoes, salsify, leeks, Jerusalem artichokes and blood oranges. The menu is usually set at the last minute so that the best seasonal produce available from Riverford at the time can be used.

carrotorangecreamsoup.jpg“I have thoroughly enjoyed these classes. I have learned many new skills and the classes have given me ideas on using seasonal vegetables. I have used many of the recipes again.”

“Thank you for another wonderfully inspiring and enjoyable evening.”


Date: Tuesday 12th and Wednesday 13th February 2013

Time: 7pm - 10pm

Location: London N5 (Arsenal tube 2 mins walk)

Price: £45 per person per class. Or £120 for 3 Cooking Club class places, which could be 3 for you, or you plus 2 friends, or as gifts, or any combination of those options.

To book: Email Anna
Please read the booking terms & conditions before booking your place. Thank you.

Riverford Cooks

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smredrussiankale0002.JPGRiverford delivers delicious veg boxes from its network of sister organic farms across England.  I have been a customer for some time and greatly admire their business ethics and the high quality of their produce.  I wrote about them in my book Eat Slow Britain - see here for an excerpt. 

Riverford Cooks is their initiative to get everyone cooking more vegetables.  As one of their network of Cooks, I give classes for customers and their friends, in homes, at my teaching kitchen and at Riverford HQ in Devon.  It's all about getting excited about seasonal vegetables and learning new ways to cook them.  Some of my Riverford classes are open to non-customers too (although we hope to persuade you of the joys of a veg box!) - so look out for dates.  And check out the Riverford Cooks website for more events and my Cook's profile

Whitmuir Farm

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esb.jpgExcerpt from Eat Slow Britain by Alastair Sawday & Anna Colquhoun:

… At first cattle and lambs were trucked four-hundreds miles to a slaughter house in Devon, from where meat travelled to supermarkets across Britain. If supply outstripped demand, orders were reduced or delayed without notice. If animals grew too large, they were rejected as unsuitable for the mechanised processes. “For all we knew our meat ended up on shelves down the road, yet untraceable to Whitmuir. We wanted to take control and know our customers.”

smwhitmuirfarm0001.JPGA gift of two Tamworth sows - Cinnamon and Nutmeg, thought to be sterile yet proving prolific - spurred the move to direct sales. A tiny shop was swapped for a bigger one and now they have a restaurant, too. “We invested everything and have more risk and direct accountability to consumers, but we wouldn’t go back to anonymous wholesale.”

... Whitmuir’s Shorthorn cattle only eat grass. This gives their meat a healthier balance of Omega-6s to Omega-3s, and softer, yellower fat. Calves also wean naturally. An early attempt to hasten the process by luring cows away to a field of tasty kale resulted in disaster when they trashed three electric fences and a gate to reclaim their young …

Whitmuir Farm, Scottish Borders, Scotland

Vegetable box cooking classes

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Do you get a weekly organic vegetable box but rarely use it all up?  Are there wrinkly beetroots, swedes and turnips lurking at the back of your fridge, making you feel guilty? 

Well, you're not alone.  Surveys have found that the majority of veg box customers have trouble getting through their box, mainly due to limited cooking time, low culinary confidence, and lack of recipe inspiration.

SmPreservingClass0603100004.JPGI've recently joined a new scheme, run by veg box kings, Riverford Organic, to help more people make more use of their beautiful vegetables.  I'm offering small cooking classes in London for Riverford customers and their friends, and getting involved with other exciting Riverford events. 

You can read more about it here, and join Riverford's new Community of Cooks here.  Pictures of my first class - on preserving winter fruits and vegetables - are here.

Couscous aux légumes d'hiver anglais

morocco
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One of Morocco’s most celebrated dishes is ‘couscous aux sept légumes’.  Seven is a lucky number in Morocco, and each region and city has its own variant version of this wonderful dish.  Some say it should be made with not only seven different vegetables, but also seven spices and seven-year-old aged butter, called smen, for maximum good fortune.  By these standards this recipe is pretty charmed.  (I’m counting the chickpeas and the chillies.)

Having greatly enjoyed eating and helping make this dish several times during our time in Morocco, I couldn’t wait to try it at home.  Normally, you’d expect to see fresh tomatoes, aubergines, courgettes and the like, but I couldn’t wait for summer.  So here is my winter version, employing all the usual suspect British root vegetables from our organic box.  We’re lucky enough to have a small pot of delicious homemade smen given to us by a kind woman we encountered in the mountains near Taliouine (of saffron fame).  It smells like blue cheese and adds a unique rich savoury note to the couscous.  If you don’t happen to have any aged butter, use regular butter or Indian ghee instead.  If you like, you can mash blue cheese into some butter to mimic the smen flavour.

Smcouscouswinterveg0001.jpgI’ve simplified the recipe by using tinned chickpeas, quick-cook couscous and water or stock.  For the real deal, you should really cook the chickpeas from scratch (soaking them in advance and then peeling them), roll and steam your own couscous (steaming it three times over the simmering vegetables), and use a hunk or two of meat to make the broth.  It is also sometimes served with a delicious sweet relish of caramelised onions and raisins.  But this simple way works just fine, and there’s no need for any meat.  The vegetables come out most delicately tender and exquisitely flavoured; you may be surprised how delicious turnip and swede can be.

For a traditional Moroccan banquet such magnificent couscous dishes would be served following the meat course and before the desserts.  But they are really meals in themselves.  To eat, people cluster around the giant communal dish, usually sitting on cushions or benches around a low table, and eat with their hands.  As we found, the knack of shaking handfuls of couscous into neat balls and then popping them into your mouth, using just your right hand and without smearing food all over your face, is one that requires considerable dexterity.  After embarrassing ourselves on numerous occasions, we slowly learnt that it’s all in the wrist action, and the use of the soft, moist vegetables as glue to bind the couscous.  This is great party food!

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